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Home > About > News > Learn how Alberta is innovating in finance & insurance
December 17, 2023
Alberta Innovates supports and highlights innovation across Alberta.
Here are five of our favourite stories of finance and insurance innovation from the last few years.
For many Canadians, it’s challenging to find reliable investing information. Taran Kainth, CEO and co-founder of Flahmingo, set out to empower Canadians by breaking down barriers to investing and increasing financial literacy.
Flahmingo uses a system called Pies and Slices, whereby each stock or exchange-traded fund (ETF) a person owns is a slice of their pie. Flahmingo automatically invests your funds into publicly traded companies or ETFs you choose, with dollar amounts or percentages you specify. Users can change the weight of a slice and set up recurring deposits that Flahmingo automatically invests. Users can easily increase or decrease the deposit amount. Fractional shares allow you to own a piece of your favourite company without having to buy an entire share. The company has also created Flahmingo Central—a hub for people to learn about the stock market and earn cash.
Taran Kainth won Calgary’s EO Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2018.
Symend Inc. was founded in Calgary by Tiffany Kaminsky and Hanif Joshaghani in 2016. Symend uses workflow automation, data analysis, artificial intelligence, machine learning and proprietary algorithms to identify trends and behaviours that help their clients recover a higher percentage of the outstanding debt owed to them more quickly. Businesses can now do so in a respectful manner that’s personalized to each of their customer’s individual circumstances.
“Alberta Innovates played a role in all of it, especially in the early days where we needed to stretch every dollar as far as we can. We gained a lot of cushion from Alberta Innovates,” said Symend co-founder Hanif Joshaghani. “I like to think that we are an example of where helping entrepreneurs early in their incubation of their ideas really does pay off.”
Led by Inovia Capital, Symend Inc. raised USD $52 million in funding in the spring of 2020.
Helcim provides online and in-person payment tools to businesses across thousands of different industries. With their all-in-one cloud-based platform combined with more affordable Interchange Plus pricing, businesses can take control of their payments and customize their experience to meet their needs.
Helcim is one of only a handful of companies that has built its own payments stack and controls the backend process to its payment service. This allows the company to customize its offering and do things differently from the big banks by putting honesty and transparency first.
Using built-in payment tools, business owners can get paid faster with online invoicing and a virtual terminal, or easily accept contactless payments at checkout or on the go. They can also get a fully hosted online store or add payments to their current website.
By creating an easier, smarter, and more affordable payment solution, Helcim is enabling more small businesses to get paid and grow, ultimately helping the economy thrive.
Applying for a mortgage is often one of the most complicated tasks a future homebuyer will undertake. Entrepreneurs, Greg Williamson, and Carter Zimmerman came together to change that, and the idea for Finmo Financial Technologies was born.
Finmo’s digital platform for mortgage applications allows lenders to offer safe and secure digital transactions for homebuyers. Prospective buyers enter their information into an electronic mortgage application, which lenders then use to make a decision. All necessary documents go back and forth digitally, and the application is signed off with electronic signatures.
In 2020, Finmo was working with over 2,500 mortgage brokers, helping to complete 35,000 mortgage applications.
On October 27, 2020, Lendesk, a Canadian technology company that is modernizing the mortgage industry, announced that they were acquiring Finmo.
In the oil and gas sector, there can be a two-year lag between when a financial transaction takes place and when it is audited. Integrity Technology Solutions (ITS) wants to shorten this time span so companies can validate costs and build trust in transactions more quickly. Founded by a team of auditors and accountants, ITS uses a revolutionary document review Software-As-A-Service application to assist the oil and gas sector with joint ventures and contract compliance. The app uses Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to validate invoices in the wider context of complex accounting agreements. This helps auditors fix problems faster so they can expedite their payment process and reduce their payment gap from the usual 120 days to between 30 – 60 days, improving cash flow.
In fall 2021, Integrity Technology Solutions Ltd. was one of 11 North American companies selected to participate in GrowthX’s revenue accelerator program.